WNPS monthly lecture: Responsible wildlife photography: A powerful tool of conservation

Those with the time and opportunity to indulge in wildlife photography have a great responsibility. This is vital in an age when, due to human activity, the world loses its precious habitat and biodiversity on a daily basis. In such an environment, photographers have the obligation of not only bringing the plight of these animals to the attention of the world, but also in ensuring that their activities don’t add to the problem. The primary goal should be the well-being of the subject of the picture, whether wild animal or wilderness area.

Wildlife photography has the power to showcase the beauty and wonder of nature; to inspire people to do what is necessary to preserve it for future generations. It has the capacity to give a voice to those creatures that have no other way of communicating the wonder of their being. It is a very powerful tool if used wisely and well, and not just for personal aggrandisement. The best photographers are those who are primarily wildlife lovers and conservationists. It shows in the quality of their photographs, giving them an added empathy and depth of feeling.

Wildlife Photographer Buddhilini De Soyza

The Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award is the most prestigious wildlife photography competition in the world and is conducted by the Natural History Museum of London. Buddhilini De Soyza or “Dilini”, as she prefers to be called, was “highly commended” at the annual Wildlife Photographer of the Year Award 2021 for her extraordinary photograph of cheetahs fighting the currents of the Talek River in Kenya’s Maasai Mara Game Reserve.  Not naturally fond of water, the look of fear and anxiety on their faces as they battle the swirling torrent frames a dramatic photograph that speaks a thousand words. 

Dilini defines herself as an animal lover, photographer, travel enthusiast, and investment banker; a “city dweller” who is always looking for an excuse to run to the jungle. She lives in Sydney, Australia with her husband and two dogs. Her love affair with nature and wildlife began as a toddler: “…the greatest gift that my dad gave to me.” Visiting national parks in Sri Lanka since the day she could walk, photography seemed a natural extension of her love of nature. Over the years, she has travelled extensively in Asia and Africa to photograph wildlife in their natural habitat. Dilini hopes to showcase the beauty, complexity, and sheer wonder of these animals and locales, and in some small way inspire others to help in their conservation.

The Wildlife and Nature Protection Society (WNPS) Public Lecture is presented in association with Nations Trust Bank and is open to all. 

Date: 25 November at 6 p.m. via Zoom

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